Obamacare Impact: What’s Happened and What’s Ahead?
By March 31, 2014, individuals not already covered by an insurance plan must enroll — either through the Health Insurance Marketplace or otherwise – or pay a tax penalty, unless they qualify for an exemption. With the enrollment deadline approaching, individuals and businesses are trying to understand the effect the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will have now and in 2015, when the employer responsibility provisions phase-in. The “Kaufman Rossin Presents: Obamacare Impact” breakfast seminar on February 28, 2014, asked a panel of professionals to weigh-in on the effect of the Affordable Care Act on their respective industries and to share some tips for navigating the upcoming changes.
The discussion, moderated by Beverly Beattie, founder and CEO of Selden Beattie Benefit Advisors, explored the impact of the Affordable Care Act on businesses in South Florida. Panelists were:
- Joy A. Batteen, director of talent development at Kaufman Rossin
- Sharon Quinn Dixon, shareholder attorney at Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A.
- Nathan B. Hirsch, M.D., FACOG, of South Miami OB-GYN Associates
- David Stoots, senior account executive at Aetna, Inc.
The panelists discussed the positive and negative effects of the Affordable Care Act and shared strategies for understanding the upcoming changes. Here are three key takeaways:
- Staying informed is your responsibility. You need to research and read all you can about the Affordable Care Act to ensure you fully understand the law and are complying with the new requirements. The Kaiser Family Foundation website, the U.S. Small Business Administration website, and, of course, HealthCare.gov are great sources for staying up-to-date.
- Tap into professional knowledge. Business advisors, brokers and insurance providers are important resources for learning more about your new responsibilities and creating a roadmap for your company’s future.
- Develop a long-term implementation plan. Proposing and implementing an ACA compliance plan will enable your business to meet the requirements and help your employees to understand the law and adjust to future changes.
Businesses with more than 50 full-time employees have until January 1, 2015 to decide if they will provide insurance or pay penalties. With multiple deadlines approaching, we will continue to cover the Affordable Care Act and its implications for our clients in the coming months.